Levi Leipheimer, doctor expand on Lance Armstrong, doping in cycling

Published: Thursday, Oct. 11 2012 9:00 p.m. MDT

"In April of 2007 at the Tour of Georgia, I asked Johan Bruyneel whether the team was going to organize a blood doping program for the 2007 Tour de France," Leipheimer said in the affidavit. "Johan responded, 'You're a pro; you should do it on your own.' I told Johan, however, that it was too stressful and that without team assistance I would not be using blood at the 2007 Tour. Johan seemed upset by my response."

Leipheimer said he trained with Armstrong in 2008, 2009 and 2010. He said Armstrong asked him if there was "any talk of new performance enhancing drugs in the peleton. I responded that I had not done anything, and Lance said, 'if you had done something, I would know.' "

He enjoyed good relationships with his teammates and Armstrong until he was called to testify before a California grand jury in October 2010. He said he testified truthfully, and shortly thereafter he was treated coldly by Armstrong. He said his wife received a text from Armstrong that she perceived as a threat. It said, "Run, don't walk."

Leipheimer said he'd endured a great deal of animosity during the 2011 cycling season because of his testimony. He was dropped from the RadioShack team that he helped Armstrong start.

Testa said he knows Leipheimer and trusts his insight.

"People can make mistakes, good people," Testa said. "Cycling has been doing a lot of effort to improve and clean the sport. Now we need to give (the sport) to the new generation of cycling. … We have a lot of good cyclists racing in a different era where doping is not such an issue like it was 10 years ago."

He hopes the sport can heal, and points out that those athletes are already proving that success can be had without cheating.

"In any bad thing, you want to bring home something good," he said. "These are good people, good guys, good athletes, and I trust them. I believe them."

email: adonaldson@desnews.com Twitter: adonsports

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